Audience etiquette is a broad term and what might be acceptable at one place may be considered rude at another. For example, if you are attending a play or a ballad performance, singing along may be viewed as inconsiderate, while in case of a rock performance, the singer may himself invite you to join the chorus.
Most of the artists these days are not very impressed with the way people behave during a performance. You might have heard numerous stories of how people spill their drinks over, engage in hooliganism or are always talking on their phones.
This kind of behavior not only upsets the fellow audience but also belittles the work of the artist. So, it becomes very important then that we display appropriate audience etiquette. Some social etiquette tips that we should remember while attending a performance are given next.
- The first and foremost thing that you should remember is the scheduled time at which the concert is going to start. Make sure that you are seated at your place before the commencement of the performance.
- Starting a conversation while the performance is going on should be strictly avoided as it not only shows that you are disinterested, but makes you a nuisance for those who are paying full attention. If you find something worth discussing, you can keep it to yourself and then share it during a break.
- Many a times, we tend to get so much immersed in the performance that we start humming along or start tapping our feet to the beats of the song. Remember that there are other people around who need silence and you may be inadvertently disturbing them. So, make it a point to keep your gestures to a bare minimum and let others enjoy the performance.
- Unwrapping candies and throat-soothers causes distraction and annoys both the audience and the performers. So, try doing these things before the start of the act or in the break. If you need a throat-soother rather immediately, open it quickly and be done with it.
- Although organizers don't run an announcement requesting you to turn off your cell phones or keep them on silent mode like they do in movie theaters, we should ourselves take the initiative to ensure that our cell phone doesn't become a cause of nuisance for the whole audience.
- Chewing gum, burping and slouching are some things that you should avoid during a performance. Apart from annoying those around you, these acts portray you poorly. You should always keep these basic things in mind to avoid any kind of faux pas.
- If you have had too much to drink, instead of heading towards a concert, you should head towards home and sleep it off. Arriving at a performance in a drunken state is not acceptable at all, so you at all costs should avoid attending any function if you feel that you are not sober or can't behave yourself properly.
- Lastly, being unresponsive also qualifies as a bad etiquette. This doesn't mean that you have to force yourself to clap or give a standing ovation. If you didn't think the performance was good, you are well within your right to not appreciate it, but if you enjoyed a performance and still remain indifferent to the artists, it is considered as plain rude.
How would you feel if after toiling so hard, your manager or boss behaves casually and doesn't appreciate your efforts? Artists thrive on the applauding and appreciation they get from the audience, so it is important that you clap, cheer to recognize the hard effort that they have put in.
These were some etiquettes which ensure that you aren't pestering people off at a concert. If you look at the tips mentioned, you will find that these are pretty simple things to follow, but perhaps we as a society have grown too oblivious to others around us that we have to be constantly reminded of these things.
Kenneth Haigh, the famous British actor, has perfectly said that "You need three things in the theater - the play, the actors and the audience, - and each must give something".